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What’s in: what to watch this week

Got a hot date with your sofa? Here are this week's best new film and TV releases to spice up your evenings.

Little Birds: Season 1 (Sky Atlantic, 4 Aug)

Here’s one to watch when the kids are in bed! Inspired by Anaïs Nin’s collection of erotic short stories, Sky Atlantic original Little Birds is sexy, kooky and dramatic in equal measure, with a healthy dose of political intrigue. Starring Juno Temple (AtonementMaleficent) as troubled American debutante Lucy Savage (this summer’s unlikely fashion inspo?) alongside Yumna Marwan and Hugh Skinner, the action takes place in Tangiers in 1955, one of the last outposts of colonial decadence. All episodes land on Tuesday 4 August.

How to Build a Girl (Amazon Prime)

This new film adaptation of Caitlin Moran’s semi-autobiographical novel of the same name is worth watching just for Nineties nostalgia alone – and is particularly poignant on the back of Q Magazine closing. It tells the story of an awkward Wolverhampton teen reinventing herself as a quirky music journo, and there are more celeb cameos than you can count (Emma Thompson, Alfie Allen, and er, Mel and Sue, to name a few).

The Peanut Butter Falcon (Netflix, 3 Aug)

Unlikely buddy comedy meets Deep South escapism in this highly rated 2019 indie favourite that’s just landed on Netflix. It stars Shia LaBeouf, Dakota Johnson and emerging star Zack Gottsagen as a young boy with Down’s syndrome running away from his care home to become a wrestler – sounds corny, but will warm even the coldest of cockles.

Upgrade (Netflix, 7 Aug)

Gore galore in this horror sci-fi movie from the makers of Get OutSaw and Insidious. Logan Marshall-Green plays a quadriplegic bent on revenge for the brutal murder of his wife, with the help of an experimental chip he implants in his body. Watch from between your fingers.

The Deceived (Channel 5, available now)

Missing your Paul Mescal fix now you’ve finished Normal People? Catch him in Channel 5’s new psychological thriller The Deceived, in which a Cambridge undergrad falls for her married lecturer. This four-part drama runs every night at 9pm from Monday 3 August. Catch up on My5.

Arkansas (Amazon Prime, 5 Aug)

Think Breaking Bad with considerably more eye candy, courtesy of the second best Hemsworth brother, Liam. Low-level drug dealers Kyle and Swin end up on the wrong side of Arkansas kingpin Frog, played by Vince Vaughn. John Malkovich also pops up as a park ranger/drug dealer.

The Fight (Amazon Prime, 7 Aug)

If you enjoyed the third season of the podcast Serial (squaring up to the American criminal justice system), then this documentary will be right up your street. It follows a team of lawyers working for the American Civil Liberties Union and touches on everything from abortion and immigration to LGBTQ and voting rights. Heavy, but well worth a watch.

Prodigal Son (Sky One)

Prodigal Son Sky One

This dark detective show from across the pond should satisfy crime fans after something a little meatier – not least because it features Michael Sheen doing his best Hannibal. It stars Tom Payne as criminal psychologist Malcolm Bright, whose father (Sheen) was a notorious serial killer nicknamed The Surgeon. Packed with black humour.

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